GRAND Magazine - January/February 2019 - 8

travel

A long giraffe at sunset in Pilamsberg National Park

Breast feeding in public is legal in
Zimbabwe

Animal photos courtesy of author

"

The crew continually pushes me out of my comfort zone while
providing a level of reassurance and security. Our group is akin
to a family that shares laughs, idiosyncratic behaviors, and inside
jokes. "Don't worry if you get sick," one group member joked.
"Between all of us we have more medication than a pharmacy!"
We chided each other daily to take our malaria pills and rubbed
each other's backs with mosquito spray. In the evenings, the phenomenal South African wine and the tapestry of our lives both
poured out endlessly.
Those who know me aren't the least bit surprised I choose to
vacation annually with a group of grandmothers, knowing how
close I was to my own. I contend that grandmothers, particularly
the black pants crew, make the best travel buddies for a multitude
of reasons. They have the time and money to truly enjoy life, and
like me, they are thrilled to stop often for a bathroom break. While
my own contemporaries worried that I'd get eaten by a lion in the
famous Kruger National Park (the oldest national park in South
Africa), I was more concerned about having to pee before the
bumpy three-hour Jeep ride ended. Though you remain seated, as
the Jeep winds off road through the thorny bush, you experience
8 GRAND

JANUARY FEBRUARY 2019

A leopard jumps into a tree to roar in Thornybush
National Park

Two approximately three-year-old lions standing guard in
Thornybush National park

a core workout reminiscent of the characters in a video game
bobbing and weaving to avoid the villains.

A dazzle of zebras

I can think of no group more beautiful to have returned to my
favorite continent with. The depth of the conversations we share
and the nurturing spirit of the grandmothers who have adopted
me into their black pants tribe-dresses and all-is the perfect
match to the incandescent beauty of the nature and spirit of the
African land.

"From watching the sun rise during
our morning journey over a lake
with splashing hippos to its majestic For more on travel to Africa:
decrescendo crowning the elephants Road Scholar (formerly Elderhostel) sponsors expert-guided
learning adventures around the world, including birding safaris to
who walked in tandem with their
four countries in Southern Africa:
The Women's Travel Group offers tours geared for women
babies, it is a sensory explosion of
traveling solo or with friends, including trips to Kenya, Madagascar
beauty."
and South Africa.

"

The vast reward for bladder discipline is the awe-striking ability
to see animals--from lions to rhinos to the giraffes who welcomed
us outside our hotel lobby--in their natural habitat. There is nothing like the African sun. From watching it rise during our morning
journey over a lake with splashing hippos to its majestic decrescendo crowning, the elephants who walked in tandem with their
babies, it is a sensory explosion of beauty.

Lia Jill Levitt is a global citizen who left corporate
America to pursue her dream of becoming an
intellectually inspiring speaker for seniors. She hopes
to publish the world's first happy (and true) story about
a nursing home, where her blind grandmother thrived
and inspired Lia's love for working with and writing for
seniors. Learn more at aintshesweet.net.


https://www.facebook.com/GRANDmagazine/ https://www.twitter.com/grandMmagazine https://www.roadscholar.org/find-an-adventure/21528/southern-africa-birding-safari-south-africa-zambia-zimbabwe-and-botswana https://www.thewomenstravelgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Kenya-Madagascar-2019-Womens-Travel-Group-update.pdf http:// https://aintshesweet.net/

GRAND Magazine - January/February 2019

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